The social media shift, the rising influence of social networks on our wider communicative landscape, is one of the biggest changes we’ve ever experienced. But of course, we don’t really see it that way. In large part, because of the gradual progression of behaviours and changes in how we interact, we sometimes don’t even notice its significance or the transformative nature of the process. It’s similar to how we physically change as we get older – the shift happens slowly and continues to evolve without us really paying it much attention because we live with it every day, because we experience it. Then one day, when you take a look back, you realize just how different things have become.
This is the type of transition we’re seeing through social media and our increased connectivity, it’s changing the way we interact, evolving the way we connect, the way we consume, the way we work. Staying up with the pace of such change is almost impossible – even people reading all the main updates everyday and staying in touch with the news can miss things, other advances happening in alternate sector, places you’d never even thought to look. Keeping informed poses a major challenge, but it’s important to do so to ensure you and your business don’t get left behind.
To help with this, here’s a listing of some of the key people to follow on Twitter to keep you abreast of the latest happenings in social and the evolving social media marketing landscape. Each one has their own strengths, as noted in the brief descriptions below – following these 12 power users will help anyone stay up with the latest social trends and keep ahead of the game.
The founder of ProBlogger, Darren Rowse has been making a living as a blogger for more than a decade – the guy knows what he’s talking about. Rowse provides a range of insights into the practicality of actually making money from your blog and building an audience and maintaining attention. Follow Rowse for the latest insights into blogging and industry leading thoughts on how to be a better blogger and maximise your opportunities through online mediums.
Granted, he does talk a lot about ‘hustle’, and he does tweet quite a bit about the New York Jets, but when ‘Gary V’ is on, he’s one of the most engaging and insightful speakers in the social media industry. The best thing about Vaynerchuck is that he loves what he does, his passion always shines through, whether it’s a blog post or a video. He’s one of those magnetic personalities that has the ability to make you believe what he does, just because he presents his case with such life. And the best thing is, he’s usually right. Follow Vaynerchuck for the latest major news and shifts, and what they actually mean in the wider scheme. But more than that, follow Gary V just to get a reminder every now and then of the true roots of what you’re doing in social, the real, basic business logic that underlines much of the hype and buzz.
Primarily a LinkedIn expert, Dodaro shares a range of social media updates and notes, with a real focus on actionable advice, on providing information relevant to the everyday user. If you’re looking to maximize LinkedIn, follow Dodaro, she’s a key resource for anyone looking to better utilize that platform. But even if you’re not focusing on LinkedIn Dodaro regularly shares a raft of applicable social content and insights, with relevant updates, links and comments to help people make sense of the wider social shift.
One of the most passionate voices in social, and a great example of how people can use their passion to fuel digital success. Fanzo, of late, has shifted focus more towards live-streaming, and he’s definitely a key resource to follow if you’re interested in that space. But even if you’re not looking for the latest on streaming, Fanzo’s Twitter feed is full of content, information and insights relating to social media and social selling, and how brands can use new mediums like social to achieve better results. And when I say ‘results’, I don’t just mean sales – Fanzo is a big advocate for using social to connect, to #ShowUCare. If you’re looking for engaging perspectives and up-to-the-minute updates, Fanzo is your man.
Cicero is the founder of Delmondo, a platform which helps brands connect with content creators and influencers on evolving digital platforms. What you want to follow Cicero for is insight into the latest trends and changes in new apps like Snapchat and live-streaming. There’s no better resource than Cicero to get a handle on how brands can utilize these shiny new channels, and no better place to get an honest and realistic assessment of what’s actually happening in the space.
A regular contributor to various blogs and websites, Brian Honigman is a content marketing consultant, and one of the few people who’s able to explain the technical aspects social media, data analytics and SEO in a relatable, readable way. Always at the forefront of what’s happening in digital marketing, follow Brian mainly for links to his own, excellent content, which details the how and why of how to achieve best results, but also to stay up to date with the latest trends and shifts.
Author of the much-referenced content marketing book ‘Youtility’, Jay Baer’s Twitter stream is a great resource for anyone trying to get a better understanding of content and/or the social media space. Baer is also the President of strategy consulting firm Convince and Convert and shares a range of insights from the many industry experts who contribute to the C and C blog, along with his own great content. Baer is one of the people leading the conversation in digital marketing – if you aspire to stay up with the game, following Mr. Baer is a good start.
Miller is a social strategist at Pure Matter, and a passionate advocate for social selling and social media utilization for business. Follow Miller for great insights into the social selling landscape and how it’s evolving. Few people are more tuned into the pulse of social, and Miller uses that create, curate and share a wide range of valuable insights and best practices, looking at how brands can achieve best results through social. What’s more, Miller ‘keeps it real’ – there’s no indulgence, no over the top hype, just basic, good logic and practice to help people make best use of the platforms.
The term ‘thought leader’ is over-used – one of the few people that actually qualify for this title, in the digital marketing arena at least, is Brian Solis. Solis is the author of several books on the evolution of business, including the upcoming ‘X’, and regularly shares informative and enlightening perspectives on digital transformation and the increasing role technology plays in our lives. What’s more, Solis is a great writer and communicator, able to present clear and eloquent arguments in a way that allows the reader an ‘in’, a means to better understand the shifting landscape.
Jason Calacanis is a tech investor who uses his Twitter account to share his thoughts on the various developments and changes in the industry. And those thoughts are valuable – Calacanis has great insight and provides perspectives that only someone with intimate knowledge of the inner-workings of the tech sector is able to share. Follow Calacanis to get a whole other view on the digital landscape, a view from the other side, and see the coming evolutions before they’re being reported on all the social news sites.
Mari Smith is one of the world’s leading Facebook marketing experts, and she regularly shares news and updates about the platform before others. Using her vast knowledge and understanding of the platform, Smith highlight how the latest updates affect you and your business, the things you need to be aware of in Facebook marketing and the ways in which businesses can use Facebook to best advantage. Smith also attends a wide range of conferences, sharing insights and updates as she does.
How about you – who are your social media must-follows?